The December long weekend or “puente” failed to deliver the tourist numbers expected, officials in Andalucia said.
Despite having the Davis Cup in Sevilla, trade from a cruise ship in Malaga and the every popular Sierra Nevada ski resort, Malaga saw lower hotel occupancy levels than for the same time in 2010. The figures are made worse by the fact that last year saw the air traffic controllers strike which damaged tourist numbers.
Malaga hotels reported average occupancy at less than 50% capacity while Sierra Nevada hotels saw 90% capacity, one of the highest figures for several years.
Sierra Nevada has benefited from the lack of snow in the north of Spain which has been warm and dry throughout autumn prompting over 70,000 skiers and a further 12,000 non-skiing visitors to head south.
A possible explanation for the lack of tourists could be that schools in some other regions and some parts of Andalucia had not closed for the entire week.